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The Legend of Korra... Where is the story going? Part 2

Now at the cusp of the season finale, I will reveal and disscuss the three possibilities for Amon's identity, in the order of least likely to most likely, in my opinion.  Before I do that there is one more thing I have to say:  it is impossible for Aang to be Amon.  Period.  Why do I say this?  I say this because there are those that still proceed with this line of thinking, even though it goes against one of the most basic known facts in the Avatar world - there can only be one Avatar at a time.  Meaning, of course, Korra could not be the Avatar (and perhaps have never been born) if Aang was still alive.  Plus, it was stated in the very first episode that Aang was dead, and said by the person who knew Aang the best and was likely there when he died - his wife, Katara.  So, Aang is gone from the Avatar World... and that is a fact.

So, who is Amon? 

1)  Bumi, Aang's and Karata's second child. 

The reason most people jump onto this possibility is the fact that he was a non-bender, and being the son of the Avatar and the world's most powerful waterbender, he would have been resentful of  others that could bend.  While that might be an intersting story to tell, and could have been the direction the Legend of Korra could have taken, I believe this is not the case.  First, we know next to nothing about Bumi, other than he is the other son of Aang and Karata, and he was only mentioned once by Karata in the first episode.  Heck, unless you went to the Nick web site, you wouldn't even know is was a non-bender, because it has never been mentioned in the course of ten episodes.  So, if this is the big reveal, it would be a lame one indeed.  The only reason I mention it here is because Mike and Brian do have a track record of ass pulls in order to resolve plot points  The case I'm refering to is energybending itself.  In the course of 61 episodes, the possibility that you could alter the internal chi of a person to the point of removing their innate ability to bend the elements is never mentioned until the very last episode of the series, and that is moments before Aang uses it to remove Ozai's bending.  No hints, no suggestions, no foreshadowing.  Energybending is merely the Deux Ex Machina that convently lets Aang out of his moral dillema over whether to kill Ozai or not with a third option.

If Amon is Bumi, then it is just another lame twist in a similar vein.

2)  Yakone had another son.

As I state in part one, I was surprised that Tarrlok was not Amon.  The set up was perfect.  However, it appears that idea was just a deliberate red herring set up masterfully my Mike and Brian.  However, an interesting twist on this idea is that Yakone could have had not one, but two sons.  A possible set up could be that both came up with a plan of revenge for their father against Republic City.  A classic pincer move in which Amon would set up a crisis situation that would allow Tarrlok to use his possition in government to inact laws that would allow him to have more and more control over the citizens.  Together, then, they could rule Republic City with an iron fist, not from the underbelly, but from the legitamate halls of power.  Also, if Tarrlok and Amon are identical twins, that would explain why Amon wears a mask, with the cover story that he was burned as a child and thus scarred.  Also, important to remember that identical twins doesn't mean identical bending.  Therefore, Tarrlok could be a waterbender, while Amon could be a non-bender... or could be the one-in-a-trilion energybender. 

If this is the case, it could explain somethings.  First, it would explain why Korra recieved flashbacks when in the presence of both Amon and Tarrlok,  Aang was not only trying to warn Korra about Tarrlok, but Amon as well.  Second, it would explain why Tarrlok had access to so much Equialist equipment.  While it is possible that this stuff could have been evidence taken by the police, there would be too great of a risk of being found out if too much was taken.  Third, it makes Amon showing up at Tarrlok's "secret base" a whole lot more sense if they are working together.  Amon  learned that Korra was missing and also learned Tarrlok was involved,  Since they are working together, Amon would put two and two together and know were Tarrlok was keeping her.  It also explains Tarrlok's reaction to Amon's presnece - more along the lines of "what are you doing here?' and not 'how did you find this place?".

Finally, it may explain how Amon was able to resist Tarrlok's bloodbending - either Amon is also a powerful waterbender, or he has had alot of practice resisting Tarrlok's bending.  But why world
Amon attack Tarrlok?  Did Tarrlok go against Amon's wishes?  Did Amon think Tarrlok was going to betray him?  Was Amon planning all along to betray Tarrlok and was just looking for the right excuse?  Or did Amon believe his own hype and came to view Tarrlok as a threat?  All of them are interesting possibilites.

3) Amon is not a person, he is a dark ideal.

The idea behind this is that is not important who Amon is, but what he is.  Much in the same vein of the Combustion Man in the first series - that he was less of a character and more of a force of nature.  Thus, Amon is no one inparticular, and his true idenity is unimportnat to the story.  What is important is the ideal he represents, and it is a dark ideal.  The Avatar in all of its incarnations is the personification of the unity of the elements working harmony with nature and the spirit world.  Amon has been presented as the oppisite of that - a world not of unity of diverse peoples working and living in peace and tolerance - but a world of uniformaty, in which a unsettling "peace" is forced via removing differences and making everyone the same.  Amon then becomes the personification of a socialistic, facist ideal.  Where the True Avatar is a hero with many faces, Amon is the dark and faceless Avatar.  The carparisons to the communist revolution in China and the Equalist Movement are most apt.

It should be pointed out if this is the truth about Amon, it could set up interesting story ideas and moral ratifications to explore.  To get what I mean by this, you have to go back to the Promise, part 2, in particular the part where Ozai explains to Zuko that the Firelord, by virture of being the Firelord, is always right.  It is a very "might makes right" view of the world, and it nearly leads that world back into war.

So, from this could Mike and Brian try to explore the moral ratifications of energybending?  After all,  Aang's reason for removing both Ozai's and Yakone's bending was to make them no longer a threat to anyone.  Amon's reasons for doing so is similar, only on a much larger scale. Amon does want what the Avatar traditionally has always tried to maintain - peace - but what we find abhorrant are his methods.  However, if we accept the reasons why removing someone's bending is a good thing in Aang's case, how can we question the reasons why Amon removes bending in his case?  Does Aang's viture of being the Avatar make him right, regardless of what he does?  Since the Avatar is the most powerful being in the world, is its might the ultimate right?  Or does it reveal that despiite the best of intentions, the Avatar, regardless of its incarnation, in a flawed being that can make horrible mistakes that have equally horrible consequences for the world?

Very intersting questions to ponder as we go into the finale....

See you on the other side.


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